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Name: United States v. Adjani
Case #: 05-50092
Court: US Court of Appeals
District 9 Cir
Opinion Date: 07/11/2006

FBI agents seized Adjani’s computer while executing a search warrant at his home to obtain evidence of an alleged extortion. They also seized a computer belonging to Reinhold, who lived with Adjani, but was not a target of the warrant or identified as a suspect. Some e-mails to Adjani were found on Reinhold’s computer which implicated her in the extortion plot. Both Adjani and Reinhold were charged with conspiring to commit extortion. The trial court granted their motion to suppress the e-mails, finding that the agents did not have probable cause to seize Reinhold’s computer, and that when they discovered the e-mails implicating her, they should have obtained a search warrant. The government appealed. The appellate court held that the government had probable cause to search Reinhold’s computer, the warrant was sufficiently specific, and the seized e-mails were within the scope of the warrant. The agents acted pursuant to a valid warrant to look for evidence of a computer-based crime, and searched computers in the residence which Adjani had access to. The fact that the computer belonged to Reinhold did not exempt it. Reinhold did not need to be named in the warrant; the agents need only have believed that evidence of the offense would be found on the computer.